Since the poll is not to find the best painting in a British collection, but the best-loved, I thought I’d mention the first favourite painting I remember having.
It’s the choice of a young boy – Whaam! by Roy Lichtenstein. It used to hang prominently in the old Tate (i.e. what’s now Tate Britain), before they split off the modern collection into a separate building. Somehow I don’t think my appreciation for it had anything to do with the semiotic interplay between pop culture and ‘Fine Art’. I just thought it was cool.
The text in the thought bubble is a bit hard to read at this scale, but I can still remember it by heart: “I pressed the fire control and ahead of me the rockets blazed through the sky”.